News

Toronto ACORN win on polling stations

July 25th - Members of Toronto ACORN met with the director of elections for the City of Toronto last week over concerns about the accessibility of polling places in low income neighbourhoods in Toronto.

At the meeting he committed to dramatically increasing the number of high rise building that would have their own polling stations.  The City now hopes to have polling stations in 647 of the high rise buildings with more than 100 units, and that no polling place should be more than 800 feet from a high rise.

This meeting followed an action at City Hall in early July where tenants voiced their concern the City wasn’t doing enough to ensure that high rise tenants would have the same level of access to polling places that are found in many condo towers.

Statement on National Day of Action for Affordable Housing

July 8th, ACORN Canada members are coming together today for a National Day of Action to call on the Harper Conservatives to support private members Bill C-304 for a national housing strategy.

Currently the Bill has support from both the Liberals and the NDP.

ACORN Canada members will be holding rallies, press events, and petitioning in Metro Vancouver, Hamilton, Toronto and Ottawa.

Miloon Kothari, the United Nations special rapporteur on adequate housing, came to Canada in 2007 and recommended that Canada adopt a comprehensive and coordinated national housing policy based on indivisibility of human rights and the protection of the most vulnerable.

In June 9 2009 the federal government accepted the UN recommendations on housing, and stated:

"Canada acknowledges that there are challenges and the Government of Canada commits to continuing to explore ways to enhance efforts to address poverty and housing issues, in collaboration with provinces and territories."

It's time to make good on these commitments.

Bill C-304 would require the federal government to consult with the Provinces and Territories to develop a National Housing Plan that would "ensure secure, adequate, accessible and affordable housing for Canadians".

It's time for a national housing strategy

When Parliament recessed earlier this month Bill C-304 for a National Affordable Housing Strategy had made impressive progress, having passed second reading, but still wasn't law.  The Bill would require the government to consult with the provinces and establish a national housing program. 

ACORN Canada members across the country are excited by this progress but frustrated by the delays and Parliamentary gridlock preventing it from becoming law.  Since the Federal Government's decision in 1996 to remove CHMC from the process of building affordable housing, Canadians have been without a meaningful national housing plan. 

On July 8th, ACORN members and supporters are planning action in a number of cities across Canada to build support for this important piece of legislation.

For details on the Toronto action click here

For details on the Ottawa action click here

For details on the Metro Vancouver action click here

For details on the Hamilton action click here

 

Ottawa Metro: ACORN promotes poverty reduction as election issue

June 16th, 2010 by Tim Wieclawski -Ottawa Metro

Poor people don’t vote. So why should politicians care about their issues?

That’s an attitude Michelle Walrond, a member of the ACORN’s tenants’ advocacy group, has run into in the past, but times have changed.

“When we got poor people to vote, and it was noticeable, they started paying a little attention,” she said yesterday at a rally at city hall, where ACORN released its platform for the upcoming municipal election.

ACORN is hoping to push poverty reduction to the forefront in the buildup to election day on Oct. 25.

The platform consists of a number of points aimed at making Ottawa a more affordable city for low-income earners. Candidates who support things like the living wage policy for municipal employees and holding transit fare increases to the cost of inflation, will get an endorsement from ACORN and its 5,000 members in Ottawa.

“It’s absurd that people work for the government of a city that doesn’t pay you enough to live in that city,” said Walrond. “If a candidate wants our vote, then they need to support the issues and policies that we believe are important.”

After seeing bus fares rise seven per cent per year for the previous three years, Jean-Dieu Muhamzi said it’s time they keep to the rate of inflation.

“It needs to be affordable to low-income families,” he said.

Read the original article at: http://www.metronews.ca/ottawa/local/article/553111--acorn-promotes-pove...

Ottawa Platform Launch

Today, members of Ottawa ACORN are releasing a 4 point plan to reduce poverty and build an Ottawa we can all be proud of. 

The plan has a focus on measures to reduce poverty and break the cycles of community decline that are impacting Ottawa's working family communities.  ACORN members from across Ottawa are gathering on the steps of City Hall to release the platform.

A Living Wage for Ottawa
Ottawa should enact the draft poverty reduction plan that was passed by Council in the spring, including the living wage policy.  We are calling for a living wage policy at $13.50 per hour that would cover all direct city workers, contractors, and firms receiving economic development money from the city.  New Westminster, BC recently passed the first Living Wage policy in Canada - setting an important precedent for this type of policy.

Making Housing Work
Ottawa should lobby the province to include inclusionary housing enabling legislation as a part of the upcoming long term affordable housing strategy.  Further, the city should commit to enacting an inclusionary housing policy once the province grants it the powers to do so.

The city should also act on the declining quality of housing in the city by enacting stronger tenant protections, in particular the adoption of a system of landlord licensing that would require landlords to pass routine inspection in order to continue to operate.  In cases of extreme neglect by landlords, the city should be able to direct tenant rent into an escrow account that would be used to pay for repairs.

Civic Engagement
The city should publicly commit to honoring section 6.1 of the Ontario municipal elections act that requires there to be polling stations in all residential building containing 100 or more dwellings.

Improving Services
The city should consider the following:
-Partnering with Hydro Ottawa to deploy energy efficiency projects that help low income families reduce their cost of living.
-Partnering with the School board to ensure additional resources are dedicated to high-need school in low income communities.
-Freezing transit fares to the rate of inflation for the next council term.

Progress on Affordable Housing

Bill 58, amendment to the planning act passed second reading at Queen's Park yesterday.  If passed the bill would give Ontario's municipalities the power to enact 'inclusionary zoning' policies.  Inclusionary zoning works by granting developers increased density in new residential developments in exchange for including a percentage of affordable housing units.

The bill was brought forward by NDP MPP Cheri Dinovo, and won support from a number of Liberal MPP's as well.  ACORN Canada as been calling the Ontario Government to make inclusionary zoning legislation a key plank in the planned Long Term Affordable Housing Strategy.

Many thanks go out to all of you who sent a message to Municipal Affairs Minister Jim Bradley - his Deputy Minister for Housing MPP Donna Cansfield was one of the Liberal MPP's who voted in support of the bill.  There will be more to come as this campaign progresses.

Making History

April 26th - Today, the City Council of New Westminster British Columbia made history by voting to pass Canada's first living wage policy. 

BC ACORN members are ecstatic that New Westminster has taken the lead among Canadian municipalities and set a new national precedent for the municipal role in establishing wage floors above the provincial minimum wage. The Chair of New Westminster ACORN, and National Board Member Dave Tate had this to say:

"New Westminster has taken a stand for working families today by setting this powerful precedent.  This gives working people hope that the tide of stagnant wages is receding in Canada and that New Westminster is the first of many cities across the region, province and country to pass a living wage bylaw.”

BC ACORN worked with a broad coalition of over 40 organizations under the banner of  "A Living Wages for Families" in pushing for the policy.

Recently BC ACORN members turned in 1200 petition signatures of residents of New Westminster in support of the campaign and held a well attended forum on the subject to build public support.

Members of the press are encouraged to contact John Anderson, Head Organizer BC ACORN for comment from an ACORN member or more background on the campaign:

c) 778.385.43.85
o) 604.522.8707
e) bcacornva@acorncanada.org

There are currently a number of campaigns underway across the country aimed at enacting living wage bylaws including one being spearheaded by Ottawa ACORN.

Centretown News: Reduce Poverty Now: ACORN

June 16th, 2010 by Ryan Lux - Centretown News Online

Anti-poverty demonstrators gathered outside of city hall at the human rights memorial to unveil its platform for the upcoming municipal election Tuesday morning.

The group, called ACORN, is demanding that the city’s next council adopt a comprehensive poverty reduction strategy that would include a living wage for city employees, including employees that work for companies contracted by the city.

Almost sixty people turned up to support the platform and picketed along Elgin Street to demand the city take poverty reduction seriously.

One ACORN member, who has been with the group for four year, Nadia Willard said that the reason the group is raising poverty issues in the campaign is because for the first time in years the city can afford to do something about it.

The provincial government has agreed to resume responsibility for a host of social services that it downloaded to municipalities during the Mike Harris government.

This decision will free up almost $18 million of municipal money.

“We want this money to stay in the social domain, it would be wrong just to add it to the capital budget,” said Willard.

She emphasized the importance of the city adopting a living wage, despite the fact that most of the city’s minimum wage earners don’t work for the city.

“The city needs to take a leadership role, we need to lead by example and make decisions based on what we would want for ourselves and neighbours,” said Willard.

She said that there needs to be a change on council because in her opinion personal agendas often trump the collective good. She cited the recent increase in bus fares as an example of the current council’s disregard of the city’s poorest residents.

Ottawa Citizen: Advocacy group pushes for city to adopt living wage policy

June 6th, 2010 by Neco Cockburn - Ottawa Citizen

OTTAWA-An advocacy group for low- and moderate-income families is calling on municipal candidates to support a “living wage” policy, as well as increased affordable housing, stronger tenant protection and geared-to-income transit fares.

Members of Ottawa ACORN (the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now) on Tuesday released a list of issues they want hopefuls to support during the election campaign, including a “living wage” policy that would increase the minimum pay for anyone doing city work, whether they’re staffers or contractors, to $13.50 an hour.

“For most people who are the working poor, what it does is it gives them hope,” ACORN member Nadia Willard said.

Without a living wage, “you are constantly jeopardizing your health or trying to pay bills and make ends meet,” Willard said.

City staff are researching such a policy, which was supported by a few municipal candidates who were among about 50 people at the ACORN event outside City Hall.

Greg Ross, a candidate in Bay ward, said the City of Ottawa’s adoption of a “living wage” policy could pressure other employers, including the federal government, to do the same.

Willard and other ACORN members said the city should reinvest into a poverty reduction strategy and social programs the money that is to be saved by uploading some social services programs to the province.

Housing is another priority, the group says, citing the Alliance to End Homelessness’s call for the city to increase the number of affordable housing units by 1,000 each year.

Improving conditions for tenants is also important, since many low-income families face problems such as insect and rodent infestations, broken-down elevators, and lack of heat, ACORN says.

Ottawa EMC: ACORN demands landlord accountability

March 4st, 2010 by Phil Ambroziak - Ottawa EMC

With the municipal election looming, some city residents want councillors and council hopefuls to be mindful of an issue that, for many people, hits close to home.

On Friday, April 23, members of the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN) organized a demonstration at the corner of Croydon Ave. and Richmond Rd. in an effort to have their message heard – a demand for better standards for tenants.

“We’re trying to make city council aware of the many housing units throughout the city that are in disrepair,” remarked Kat Fortin, an Ottawa ACORN board member.

Ms. Fortin explained there were three major issues her organization was looking to draw attention to during the demonstration – the first being landlord licencing.

For the full story, please see the May 6 edition of the EMC.

New West Record: Living wage policy draws kudos from across nation

March 1st, 2010 by Theresa McManus - New Westminster's The Record

The City of New Westminster is getting kudos from poverty and health groups from across Canada after becoming the first Canadian city to agree to establish a living wage policy.

A living wage is often defined as being the minimum hourly wage that's necessary for a family of four, with two parents working full-time, to pay for food, shelter and other daily needs. City council voted unanimously to support a living wage policy that's tied to an hourly rate established annually by the Living Wage for Families campaign.

"New Westminster is the first city in Western Canada - why not be the first city in other things as well," said Coun. Jaimie McEvoy. "The pioneers would be proud."

After representatives from ACORN Canada - the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now - asked council to adopt a living wage bylaw, McEvoy encouraged council to consider the issue. He didn't know if it would fly, but he thought it would at least initiate dialogue.

McEvoy has received a lot of reaction to Monday's decision, almost all of it positive. The Canadian Cancer Society applauded the decision, saying poverty is one of the determinants of health, while the Canada Without Poverty organization said the living wage movement is a step toward ending poverty in Canada.

Tri-Cities News: More pay, more taxes: a win/win

June 18th, 2010 by Mary Woo-Sims - Tri-Cities News

FACE TO FACE: Should cities dictate ‘living wage’ as New Westminster has?

Congratulations to New Westminster city council, which in late April voted in Canada’s first “living wage” bylaw. This bylaw effectively raised the minimum wage paid by the municipality to about $16. 70 — more than double the minimum wage in B.C.

According to the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now, “a living wage is a level of pay which enables someone working full-time to earn enough to meet their basic needs and build some savings for the future.”

B.C.’s current minimum wage of $8 an hour can hardly meet one person’s basic needs, let alone a person who might be supporting a family. The movement for a living wage, which started in the U.S., has now branched into Canada and cities across the country are being asked to adopt living wage policies. New West is the first to do so.

My colleague says the living wage is a nice sentiment but it is taxpayers that have to foot the bill. But he doesn’t stop there. He’s critical of the law because it’s “another manifestation of special treatment for unionized city workers.” I take issue with that statement.

When people like my friend opposite complain about public sector or unionized workers’ wages, I wonder if these same people think these workers are exempt from paying taxes. I am glad workers, unionized or not, get as much pay as they can. The more they earn, the more taxes they pay. In addition, the more money earned, the more is spent on family, friends, goods, services, facilities, etc., and that spending keeps our economy going.

New West’s living wage law doesn’t just apply to unionized workers. The living wage also applies to workers with firms, unionized or not, that receive contracts from the city as well as companies that receive economic development funds. This ensures the living wage initiative extends far beyond the reaches of New West city workers.

Fundamentally, however, one can’t discuss the concept of a living wage without discussing the issue of B.C.’s minimum wage, which now ranks as the lowest in Canada. And let’s not forget that first-job/entry level position minimum wages start at a paltry six bucks an hour.

It’s time to make the minimum wage a living wage.

 

Maple Ridge News: Municipalities to look at living wage

March 4st, 2010 by Phil Malnychuk - Maple Ridge News

Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows soon could have their own versions of the living wage bylaw, adopted for the first time in Canada last week by New Westminster.

The bylaw, passed unanimously by New Westminster council, requires all workers, either those directly employed, or working for a company contracted out by the city, be paid $16.74 an hour.

The term “living wage” is used to describe the minimum hourly wage necessary for a family of four with two parents working full-time to meet the necessities of life. In Metro Vancouver, it is currently calculated to be $16.74 per hour.

That’s well above the $8 an hour minimum wage that’s been in place in B.C. for the past decade.

The topic is on its way to Maple Ridge’s social planning advisory committee, said Coun. Linda King, while Pitt Meadows Coun. Bruce Bell will raise it with his councillors.

Coun. Craig Speirs wants the item discussed.

“I intend to bring this up. I’m not sure how far it would go.

“I think we should be talking about what a living wage looks like. “It also needs a broader discussion, about a society that’s obsessed with the bottom line. He cited the ongoing labour dispute involving Extra Foods on Dewdney Trunk Road as an example.

“I think $16 for anybody who works for the District of Maple Ridge is not an onerous amount.”

Pitt Meadows Mayor Don MacLean was not keen on the idea.

 

Inside Toronto: Downtown rally calls for affordable housing

July 13th, 2010 by Justin Skinner - Inside Toronto

Concerned over the lack of a national housing strategy, a group of local activists gathered in Toronto's financial core on Thursday, July 8.

A small group of housing advocates from the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now, Canada (ACORN Canada) took their pleas to the streets, urging the Harper government to support Bill C-304, tabled by Vancouver East MP Libby Davies.

The bill calls for more funding for safe, affordable housing to help combat homelessness across the country.

Edward Lantz, chair of ACORN's St. James Town chapter, said they opted to lobby at the corner of King and Bay streets because it would be the best place to reach Conservative supporters.

"We don't have a Conservative MP in Toronto, but the majority of the support for the Conservative government comes from down here," he said.

Lantz noted both the Liberals and New Democrats have supported the idea of a national housing strategy. The Conservatives' refusal to support such a strategy, however, has left Canada as the only G8 country without one.

He said the recent G20 Summit showed where the Harper government's priorities lie.

"The current Harper government spent $1.5 billion on the G20," he said. "That could provide 16,000 new (affordable housing) units in the City of Toronto."

With waiting lists for affordable housing at an all-time high - the wait is currently at least 10 years - too many Canadians are forced to spend 30 per cent or more of their monthly income on rent, he said, adding that does not even take into account the hundreds of thousands of Canadians who are homeless, or those living in overcrowded spaces or substandard housing.

"We want landlords to be held accountable and we need rent controls," Lantz said. "The average rent in Toronto for a one-bedroom apartment is $800 to $900, and when you get most people making $13 or $14 and hour, prices have escalated too much."

Fellow ACORN member Carmen Respondek said the need for housing was critical. She echoed Lantz's sentiments that the money spent on G20 security should have gone toward housing instead.

"I was shocked when I heard about the fake lake," she said. "Who needs a fake lake when we don't have affordable housing?"

New West Newsleader: New West city council adopts living wage bylaw

April 28th, 2010 by A Flemming - New Westminster Newsleader

The Royal City notched up one for the history books on Monday by becoming the first city in Canada to adopt a living wage bylaw.

In a unanimous city council vote, a motion passed that will direct both city employees and contract employees to be paid at or above an hourly wage substantially higher than the current provincial minimum wage.

The term “living wage” is used to describe the minimum hourly wage necessary for a family of four with two parents working full-time to meet the necessities of life. In Metro Vancouver, it is currently calculated to be $16.74 per hour.

Coun. Jaimie McEvoy, who initially brought forward the motion, said the city was especially concerned about child poverty.

“In British Columbia, half of children who are currently living below the poverty line have a parent working full-time,” said McEvoy. “We don’t want to be like Scrooge and have employees struggling to take care of their families. It is the right thing to do.”

“We live in a city that has the lowest average income in the GVRD,” said Coun. Bill Harper. “What we’re doing is setting an example and maybe other cities and corporations will do the same.”

The new bylaw is similar to those taken up in over 140 American cities after a recent campaign by the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN), whose local chapter turned in a petition to city hall with the signatures of 1200 New West residents supporting the initiative.

Ottawa EMC: Residents rally for housing strategy

July 15th, 2010 by Katie Stewart - OttawaEMC

EMC News- Ottawa residents rallied with ACORN last week to bring awareness and gain support of Bill C-304, which calls for a national housing strategy.

If passed, the bill would require the federal government to bring all levels of government together to enact a plan to increase safe and affordable housing across Canada.

"We need to build affordable housing in Canada. We're the only G8 country without a national housing strategy," said Ottawa ACORN member Sheila Searles, who is also an active tenant leader in her building on Russell Rd. that is owned by Ottawa Community Housing Corporation.

Even though Canada is one of the richest countries in the world, in Ottawa alone, there are over 10,000 people on a waiting list for affordable housing. People can wait close to eight years for a unit to become available and in Ontario, the wait lists have increased by 9.6% in the last year.

"Housing is fundamental. Without stable housing, your education and job are jeopardized, It's essential," said Shannon Lee Mannion, community leader for affordable housing in Centretown. "Affordable housing helps stabilize people. It's a life raft."

Currently, the bill has gained the support from the Liberal, NDP, and Bloc Quebecois parties. When the bill passed its second reading in Parliament in September 2009, all MP's from these parties voted in support of Bill C-304. However, the Conservative government has yet to come on board and support the bill. Only one MP from the party voted in favour of the bill. There are 137 Conservative members of Parliament.

"They don't care because they don't have to care," said Ms. Mannion.

The demonstration of about 30 people on July 8 took place on Carling Avenue in front of the office of Conservative MP John Baird in an attempt to gain support of the bill. Mr. Baird voted against Bill C-304.

"We want John Baird and the Conservative government to give at least some consideration to this bill. This is important. It's a national crisis," said Ms. Mannion.

Andrea Thomas who is a tenant leader on her block in the east end said that the Conservatives who voted against the bill should try living in affordable housing to see how it feels for people who depend it.

"We need more housing and we need to gain the support from the Conservative government," said Ms. Thomas.

When the ACORN group approached Mr. Baird's office to present him with an information sheet, they were refused entry and were eventually ignored.

Mr. Baird's office would not provide a comment to The EMC.

"It you pay tax dollars, you deserve to talk to your MP. It's appalling," said Kat Fortin, supporter of Bill C-304.

Tahir Nazari, who voted for Mr. Baird in the last election, said he would not be voting for him again.

"We should get a response. I am living in Ottawa housing and we are facing problems. No one is helping," he said.

Presently, Ontarians are still waiting for a provincial strategy for affordable housing.

kstewart@theemc.ca

New Westminster Record: First in the nation

April 30th, 2010 by Theresa Mcmanus - New Westminster's The Record

The City of New Westminster is taking action to become the first Canadian municipality to adopt a living wage policy.


A living wage is often defined as being the minimum hourly wage that's necessary for a family of four, with two parents working full-time, to pay for food, shelter and other daily needs. City council voted unanimously to establish a living wage policy.

"I am very pleased," said Coun. Jaimie McEvoy, who encouraged council to adopt a living wage policy.

McEvoy said the policy would apply not just to unionized city employees but to people who work at city properties on a contract basis. This includes people working in security at the library and the cafeteria at city hall.

While the city doesn't yet know exactly how many people the policy will affect, McEvoy said it won't bankrupt the city.

"We still have work to do to clearly identify those who are involved and the potential costs," he said. "The finality of the details still needs to be worked on. We have made a decision in principle that this is our principle and our goal.

"At this point, we don't know for sure how many people it will affect," he said.

McEvoy said New Westminster is a small city of 66,000 people so the policy has to be something that's manageable and is something that people can understand.

Surrey Leader: A call for affordable housing in Surrey

July 9th, 2010 by Black Press - Ottawa Metro

Members of ACORN Canada held a National Day of Action on Wednesday to encourage all Members of Parliament to support the National Housing Strategy: Bill C-304.

In Surrey, more than 35 people gathered at the constituency office of Surrey-North Conservative MP Dona Cadman to protest her vote against the bill – which has passed first and second readings, and has yet to reach the third and final reading – and to urge her to change her mind.

"We want her to do the right thing," said Canada Drouin, a North Surrey resident who is on a waiting list for affordable housing. "It's just wrong to represent this community and not see the need for affordable housing."

MP Libby Davies' private member's Bill C-304 would require the federal government to bring all levels of government together to enact a plan to increase safe, affordable housing across Canada.

Along with Cadman, Tory MPs Nina Grewal (Fleetwood-Port Kells) and Russ Hiebert (South Surrey-White Rock-CLoverdale) also voted against the bill.

Newton-North Delta Liberal MP Sukh Dhaliwal voted in favour.

Pearl Nunns, spokesperson for ACORN Canada, notes Canada is the only G-8 country in the world without a national housing strategy.

"And it shows," she says.

It is estimated there are 150,000 to 300,000 homeless Canadians, and a further 450,000-900,000 "hidden" homeless.

ACORN Canada is an independent national organization of low- and moderate-income families working together for social and economic justice.

 

The Tyee: New West enacts Canada's first living wage law

April 27th, 2010 by Monte Paulsen - The Tyee Blog

New Westminster has become the first city in Canada to pass a "living wage" bylaw, effectively raising the minimum wage paid by the municipality.

"New Westminster has taken a stand for working families today by setting this powerful precedent,” said Dave Tate of BC ACORN, one of 40 organizations that lobbied for the bylaw.

Living wage bylaws set a wage "floor" above the minimum wage for workers who work directly for the city, for firms that receive contracts from the city, and firms that receive economic development money from the city.

"Once the policy is implemented, all direct and indirect workers (contract workers, etc.) performing work on City premises will earn a wage no lower than $16.74," Tate said in an email.

BC ACORN presented a petition with 1,200 signatures in support of the bylaw. The New Westminster campaign was just one of many underway across the country. A similar bylaw was recently rejected by the City of Calgary.

"This gives working people hope that the tide of stagnant wages is receding in Canada," Tate said.

Original article at: http://thetyee.ca/Blogs/TheHook/Labour-Industry/2010/04/28/New-West-enac...

 

Ottawa Metro: Affordable housing plan needed: ACORN

July 9th, 2010 by Steve Collins - Ottawa Metro

About two dozen people gathered outside cabinet minister John Baird’s constituency office to call for a national affordable housing strategy.

Members of the local chapter of the Association for Community Reforms Now (ACORN) came out in support of Bill C-304, a private members’ bill introduced by NDP MP Libby Davies.

“We’re one of the richest countries in the world, and every other (G-8) country has a national housing strategy. Shame on Canada for not having a national housing strategy,” ACORN board member Kathleen Fortin said. “There’s 10,000 people here in Ottawa on the waiting list for housing.”

After the rally, the group attempted to meet with Baird. Office staff refused to open the door, so demonstrators taped a sign to the office door and slipped an information sheet under it.

Le Droit: Le logement abordable au coeur de la campagne électorale

June 16th, 2010 by François Pierre Dufault - Le Driot

Le regroupement des organismes communautaires pour la justice sociale à Ottawa enjoint les candidats aux élections municipales du 25 octobre prochain à s'engager à créer davantage de logements abordables.

C'est le message que l'Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN) entend marteler tout au long de la campagne électorale. Le groupe demande la construction d'au moins 1000 nouvelles unités de logement abordable par année, seulement pour répondre à la demande.

« Les listes d'attente pour du logement abordable ne cessent de s'allonger », de constater Éloi Proulx, un membre fondateur de l'ACORN.

Selon les plus récents chiffres de l'Alliance pour mettre un terme à l'itinérance (AMTI), quelque 10 000 familles vivent dans l'attente d'un logement subventionné par la Ville d'Ottawa.

Jusqu'à présent, seul le conseiller municipal et candidat à la mairie, Alex Cullen, s'est formellement engagé à créer plus de logements abordables.

« Je veux y consacrer la moitié des 23 millions $ que le gouvernement de l'Ontario versera à la Ville d'Ottawa pour ses programmes sociaux. Ça ne va pas régler le problème, mais ça va donner un sérieux coup de pouce », a déclaré M. Cullen au Droit.

 

Pages